The first key to achieving a goal (personal or professional) is to have the a goal in the first place. Define it, know what it is and what it takes to achieve it. Write is down! Then the second most important thing is to have a plan. Doesn't matter how weird or how "off" that plan may be. A bad plan is better than no plan. Don't make things too complex. Think about where you want to be in 3 to 5 years.
Next thing, Decide to have principles:
- Take care of yourself and your needs because you're the only person truly responsible for yourself. Be as healthy as you can be.
- Be reliable. As an adult, you have less room for excuses and lies. You need to be counted on by your family, friends and coworkers. Don't be the guy that's 10 mins late to everything, doesn't contribute on group projects and forgets people's birthdays.
Several things we don’t always necessarily learn to be cognizant if during our adolescence are:
1. Financial literacy- be sure to understand budgeting, credit, taxes, investing, and planning for retirement.
2. Diversity- learn about people and cultures different from your own. Your children will be part of a world much more diverse than you currently know so you need to show them how to be comfortable and confident living amongst people different from them while recognizing there is much we still have in common.
3. Balance - work life balance is key. It’s no good working most of your life if you are not able to enjoy time with your family. Your children may have all the money b/c of your work, but they would resent you for not being present. Be a constant presence in your children's lives. Enjoy the small moments with them.
4. Self care - you must ensure you are taking care of yourself physically and mentally if you plan to take care of your family. This plays into finding the right balance, but your mental health is extremely important. Know your boundaries and don’t be afraid to say no when it affects your mental well being. You cannot pour into other when you have an empty cup.
That is a very open-ended question! My best answer would be to read books across a wide variety of topics; it's a great way to learn from other peoples' experiences, and you'd be surprised how large of an impact books can have on your life.
One specific book I'd recommend is The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey. This is a classic read for anyone who is interesting in improving themselves and their mindset.